China's new Foreign Minister Qin Gang heads to Africa for first trip

“Qin Gang will visit Ethiopia, Gabon, Angola, Benin and Egypt from January 9-16,” spokesperson Wang Wenbin said.

Published - January 09, 2023 04:45 pm IST - BEIJING

Qin Gang. File

Qin Gang. File | Photo Credit: Reuters

“China’s new Foreign Minister Qin Gang is starting his term with a weeklong trip to five African countries,” the Foreign Ministry announced on January 9.

“Qin, who until recently was Ambassador to the United States, will visit Ethiopia, Gabon, Angola, Benin and Egypt from January 9-16,” spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at a daily media briefing. In Egypt, Qin will also meet the secretary-general of the Arab League.

The new Foreign Minister is following in the footsteps of his predecessors who have for more than three decades started each year with a trip to Africa.

“It shows that China attaches great importance to the traditional friendship with Africa and the development of China-Africa relations,” Wang said.

The U.S. is battling China for influence in Africa, with President Joe Biden making an appeal to African leaders at a summit in Washington in December. China has become a major trading partner with the continent and investor in infrastructure and mining projects.

Qin, 56, was appointed Foreign Minister on December 30. He succeeded Wang Yi, 69, who has replaced Yang Jiechi as the government's top foreign policy official.

Wang's new position has not been announced, but a recent article by him on the Foreign Ministry website described him as director of the ruling Communist Party's foreign affairs office, the post that Yang held.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.